By Beacon Staff

We’re high on Rehberg and low on General Motors in our weekly index of what’s up down and in between …

DENNY REHBERG – The Republican Congressman is the sole member of Montana’s federal delegation to hold public town hall-style meetings over the August recess. And though he’s a minor player in the health care debate, citizens are appreciating his accessibility.

BUBBA BURGER – James Monroe of the Cutting Board restaurant in Eureka got to prepare his signature sandwich as one of two national finalists on “Live with Regis and Kelly,” – showing the Big Apple how Montana does big beef.

MONTANA STUDENTS – The 2009 graduating class gets a gold star for scores surpassing the national average on the ACT exam.

NATIONAL PARKS – Buoyed by low gas prices and free weekends, visitation is up 4 percent over last year.

FEDERAL STIMULUS – Gov. Brian Schweitzer touts the roughly 1,000 jobs created so far, but that number is likely less than the jobs lost in the Flathead alone.

POLSON RESORT TAX – The city commission approves putting a local “tourist” tax on the ballot for citizens to vote on. Will they approve?

MAX BAUCUS – Holding no town halls and facing a new poll saying a majority of Montanans disapprove of his leadership in crafting health care reform legislation, the Democrat faces the biggest test in his career as he returns to D.C. to hammer out a bill.

JON TESTER – A crucial potential swing vote on health care, with questions about the details of his recently introduced Forest Jobs bill, Tester held no town hall meetings with the public, claiming he’ll be back in September when there’s one health care bill to discuss.

GENERAL MOTORS – The automaker refuses to reconsider its cancellation of a metals contract with Montana’s Stillwater Mine.

GRIZZLY BEARS – After the illegal shooting of a huge bear near Dupuyer, and Glacier Park officials accidentally killing a yearling cub they were trying to relocate, it’s been a tough week for the great bear.